Saturday, October 25, 2014

RIP Jack Bruce


Cream bassist Jack Bruce dies, aged 71 
---
Another legend from my youth gone way too young. His bass playing influenced thousands and his song-writing was pretty damn inspired, as well. Of course, Cream's excesses also helped to bring about punk, but I love 'em anyway.

Friday, October 24, 2014

The Unwieldies at the Velveteen Rabbit, Thursday 10-23-14

Alright, alright, I know I've gone on about this terrific acoustic group a number of times on this blog, but it's only because they really are that good. The Velveteen Rabbit is a fine place to hear their sounds, as it seems more conducive to acoustic music than some other venues in town. Everyone was in fine form this evening and the songwriting really is highlighted when you can really hear the lyrics and melodies as well as the music. The songs range from heartbreak to anger to love (sometimes in one tune, I believe) and lots more and the words are always truly clever and the vocals trade-off, harmonize and switch leads, keeping anything from becoming too samey. New(ish) addition Richard adds some nice touches on dobro and acoustic guitar and Jack's violin playing seemed especially strong this night.

As I always say, I'm not much of a writer and words often tend to fail me, but if you dig well-crafted tunes with great vocals and fine playing, check 'em out.



Thursday, October 23, 2014

recommended gigs

Thursday Oct 23 - Astaires record release party at the Beauty Bar
Thursday Oct 23 - the Unwieldies at Velveteen Rabbit with Yaquina Bay
Thursday Oct 23 - the Cold Blue Rebels at the Dive Bar

Friday Oct 24 - the Psyatics with the Vibrators at the Double Down
Friday Oct 24 - The Lucky Cheats, Crazy Chief, and more at the Beauty Bar
Friday Oct 24 - Water Landing and much more for Vegas is Beautiful at the Hard Hat

Saturday Oct 25 - Thee Mapes, Vermin, Frank and Deans - Double Down Saloon
Saturday Oct 25 - The Psyatics at the Hard Hat w/the Laissez Fairs and much more for Vegas is Beautiful!
Saturday Oct 25 - Time Crashers, 3D6 and much more at Cheese Boy Comics!
Saturday Oct 25 - Life is Shit festival at the Dive Bar
Saturday Oct 25 - the All Togethers at the Pioneer Saloon

Friday October 31 - Voodoo Organist and Delta Bombers with the Punknecks and the Octanes at the Dive Bar
Friday October 31 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Dillinger

Friday Nov 7 - GWAR at Hard Rock Cafe on the Strip
Friday Nov 7 - the Unwieldies at the Dillinger

Friday Nov 14 - The Swamp Gospel with Cashed Out, Eddie Bear and the Cubs and the Ditch Diggers at the Beauty Bar

Friday Nov 14 - The Maxies, Mapes, Time Crashed and Alan Six at the Dive Bar

Sunday November 16 - the Psyatics with Water Landing, Har Mar Superstar and Pizza Underground at LV Country Saloon

Friday Dec 5 - the Unwieldies at Boomers

Saturday Jan 10, 2015 - the Psyatics with the Dictators NYC at LV Country Saloon

What have I forgotten? Lemme know!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Wayne Hancock - A-Town Blues

After seeing Wayne Hancock last week at the Dive Bar, even though it ran late enough on a Tuesday
night that I couldn't stick around, I was sufficiently impressed to want to look into his background further. I randomly (ok, it was the cheapest one I could find offhand) chose this CD, his fourth. There's no pix of the backing band here, so no idea if he has any fixed players, but on this CD the instrumental line-up is essentially the same as the group he had with him here - 2 guitars (Tony Lake, Dave Biller) a steel player (Jeremy Wakefield) and stand-up bass (2 players here - Shawn Supra and Ric Ramirez) - and are all top-notch. The sound is old-school country - as I said before, I was surprised to find that Wayne wasn't an original cat, as he sounds properly traditional, as a real C&W cat should.

Some tunes remind me of Hank Williams, some are more rockabilly-oriented, some are hillbilly-swing, some are almost blues and all are well-written and swingin'. Since the steel player here in Vegas was female, obviously is was not Jeremy, but he smokes the strings here and adds a fine flavor to the tunes. The stand-up has enough rhythm to keep you from missing any drums, and both guitarists add tasty licks, while Wayne's vocals are up there with the best in the field.

I freely admit that I'm not a country aficionado but until recently I had no idea that there were people still playing old-time country, as it should sound, instead of the pure crap that is popular these days. Nice to find and this just makes me want to discover more of Wayne's music. One to get, for sure!

Whiskey Breath - live at the Bunkhouse CD


Another local country-esque band that I have raved about numerous times is the drinkin'n'screwin'n'fightin'n'whatever wildcats, Whiskey Breath. This CD is from a live set recorded at the (old) Bunkhouse, showing the band at their inebriated best!

The set begins with one of the most covered tunes of all time, "Folsum Prison Blues", done with plenty of piss and punk-rock vigor! Original live favorites follow, like the melodic "Westbound", "Wagon With a Broken Wheel" (about falling off the wagon - nice lyrics, tune and harmonies), "Summer Wind" (with guitarist Lahm doubling on harmonica, giving it a folkie feel), a Fred Eaglesmith number about turning to a life of crime, "Time to Get a Gun", their religious drinkin' song, "May Whiskey Be With You", another ode to bourbon, "Jim Beam is My Home Boy", a pretty faithful rendition of "Knockin' on Heaven's Door", an original titled "Midnight Special" (a song about loving one person but thinking about someone else), and, of course, closing with "She Broke My Heart So I Broke Her Jaw", which has offended more than a few, probably even as they were singing along with it!

Great vocals, great harmonies, solid rhythm section, great songwriting - cool stuff all around. As a guitarist, I wish that Lahm would take a few more leads (since I know he is capable), but that's my only complaint, if ya wanna call it that. See them when ya can and pick us this CD at their gigs - they're also selling for a measly 5 spot!

Eddy Bear and the Cubs - demo CD

I've raved about Eddy Bear and the Cubs (though I guess I kept spelling it "Eddie") quite a number of
times here as Las Vegas' premier country/honky-tonk band. While some of the members may change, the quality is consistently high and they continue to keep gettin' better'n'better. They have now gotten around to recording a few tracks and are selling these demos at their shows until some record label is smart enough to pick them up and put out an "official" release. In the meantime, be sure to get this, as it is a high quality memento of their live shows!

For this session, they have Lucky Cheats string-wrangler-supreme, Wade Braggs, on lead guitar, along with stalwarts Erik & Larry on guitars and vocals, Davis on bass and their mysterious drummer, who is terrific, but whose name I can never remember (although, to be fair, I believe that there has been more than one). They pull some of the best tunes from their live show and all of the performances are smokin' and tasty!

The opener is George Jones' "You're Still on My Mind", with Erik singing lead and with some inventive C&W licks from Wade, fine harmonies from Larry and a swingin' backbeat. What follows is a unusual, slower, minor-key number that I do not remember from their live shows - Wayne Hancock's "Thunderstorms and Neon Signs", given the Cubs treatment and sung in Larry's catchy baritone. They pick up the pace in Merle Haggard's short'n'sweet "Somebody Else You've Known" (Erik on lead, with more great harmonies from Larry and Wade impressing me yet again) and raise the energy once more for Gram Parsons' country-rock tune "Ooh Las Vegas". Larry returns on lead vox for their unique mash-up of Freddie King's fantastic "Goin' Down" and Jimi Hendrix' "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)", with plenty of their own touches, and then they wrap everything up with Larry's rendition of the Saddle Tramps' lewd and crude "I'm the Bulge in Satan's Pants" - goofy but rockin' cow-punk.

These cats are always a blast live and this is a high-quality souvenir of their gigs. Catch 'em at a honky-tonk near you and slap down the measly 5 bux for this disc! You won't regret it!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

recommended gigs

Friday October 17 - 3D6, Lambs to Lions, Sector 7-G, Geezus Cryst and Free Beer
Friday October 17 - Tarah Grace and the Magnetics - Triple B
Friday October 17 - the All Togethers and the Beau Hodges Band at the Bunkhouse
Friday October 17 - Bogtrotters Union at Whiskey Dicks

Saturday Oct 18 - Super Zeroes at Double Down with Monogrim

Wednesday Oct 22 - Eddie Bear and the Cubs and the Sundowners at the Griffin

Thursday Oct 23 - Astaires record release party at the Beauty Bar
Thursday Oct 23 - the Unwieldies at Velveteen Rabbit with Yaquina Bay
Thursday Oct 23 - the Cold Blue Rebels at the Dive Bar

Friday Oct 24 - the Psyatics with the Vibrators at the Double Down
Friday Oct 24 - The Lucky Cheats, Crazy Chief, and more at the Beauty Bar
Friday Oct 24 - Water Landing and much more for Vegas is Beautiful at the Hard Hat

Saturday Oct 25 - Thee Mapes, Vermin, Frank and Deans - Double Down Saloon
Saturday Oct 25 - The Psyatics at the Hard Hat w/the Laissez Fairs and much more for Vegas is Beautiful!
Saturday Oct 25 - Time Crashers, 3D6 and much more at Cheese Boy Comics!
Saturday Oct 25 - Life is Shit festival at the Dive Bar
Saturday Oct 25 - the All Togethers at the Pioneer Saloon

Friday October 31 - Voodoo Organist and Delta Bombers with the Punknecks and the Octanes at the Dive Bar
Friday October 31 - Thee Swank Bastards at the Dillinger

Friday Nov 7 - GWAR at Hard Rock Cafe on the Strip
Friday Nov 7 - the Unwieldies at the Dillinger

Friday Nov 14 - The Swamp Gospel with Cashed Out, Eddie Bear and the Cubs and the Ditch Diggers at the Beauty Bar

Friday Nov 14 - The Maxies, Mapes, Time Crashed and Alan Six at the Dive Bar

Sunday November 16 - the Psyatics with Water Landing, Har Mar Superstar and Pizza Underground at LV Country Saloon

Friday Dec 5 - the Unwieldies at Boomers

Saturday Jan 10, 2015 - the Psyatics with the Dictators NYC at LV Country Saloon

What have I forgotten? Lemme know!

Wayne Hancock, Eddie Bear and the Cubs, Whiskey Breath, the Unwieldies, Fishing Season at the Dive Bar Tuesday Oct 14, 2014

Pretty damn exceptional line-up for this night at the Dive Bar. They definitely try to give you as much bang-for-yer-buck at these gigs and this night things started at a fairly reasonable time, so it wasn't an overly late Tuesday night.

Starting the night was a group that I was completely unfamiliar with called Fishing Season, who had a somewhat nautical theme to their look, down to the bass (fish) mounted on the bass drum. The songs tended to have a kinda sea chanty feel to them and the lead guitarist had a really cool and interesting tone that sounded almost violin-like. Couldn't really think of anyone that they sounded like - think that someone mentioned Cake and I thought vaguely Violent Femmes, but that's not really it, either.


The Unwieldies are now performing with dobro/second acoustic guitarist Richard Wells, which is a nice addition to their sound (and check out his contributions to their new CD, Always the Optimist) and which frees Jack Ball to concentrate solely on violin. Unfortunately, the number of acoustic instruments going through the PA created a sonic problem for this primarily electric venue and the sound balance for the band was, frankly, pretty bad. Feedback, distortion and other issues that do not work well with wooden music detracted from the Unwieldies lovely melodies and intricate tones. They persevered and still performed well, with some powerful moments ("Rain Damage", especially, stood out), but it was not their best - through no fault of their own. See them next Thursday at the Velveteen Rabbit, which seems more suited for their sound.


Thankfully, the sound issues were cleared up for Whiskey Breath's set, although they only had one acoustic instrument, so there were less obstacles to overcome! Guitarists Brandon and Lahm often perform as a duo (and Brandon sometimes even braves it as a solo at times), and their songs hold up well in that format, but it's always good to see the full band rockin' out with their blend of country and r'n'r. The rhythm section of Justin and Steve adds plenty to the sound as they lock in with the cool groove (though the pedal simulating a double bass drum set-up was a bit unnecessary :) ) and contribute to the melody and dynamics. The guys did a number of their catchy originals - "Jim Beam is my Home Boy", "Midnight Special" ("loving her but I was thinking about you"), "You're To Blame", "Westbound" - as well as a nice take on "Down Home Girl" (the Lieber/Butler song done by the Coasters and the Stones). Of course, they closed with their "controversial" song about domestic violence "She Broke My Heart So I Busted Her Jaw" (the title of which Spooky Tooth used first, but does anyone but me remember that?). Well written and memorable song, but it has gotten them banned from at least one establishment. For some reason, Lahm seemed to be hanging back on the harmonies this night, though his singing compliments Brandon well, and if I had any complaints, it would be that I would like to hear him riff a bit more around the songs, but I guess that's the guitarist in me talking!


While Eddie Bear and the Cubs have a somewhat revolving line-up, tonight we got the main men Larry (vocals/guitar), Erik (vocals/guitar), Davis (bass), their rock-solid drummer (I'm sorry I can never remember his name! Wish they would put members on their Facebook page!) and smokin' lead guitarist Brian. They sounded terrific this night and it's always a pleasure to watch and hear these men work - the playing is all top-notch (I always keep my eyes on Brian's playing hands to try to get some tips) and the vocals and harmonies are excellent - Erik has the smoother voice while Larry is gruffer, but still melodic, and his singing better than ever each time I see them. Surprises (to me, anyway) this night included a fine take on Elvis' "Little Sister"and the Blasters' "Long White Cadillac" and their closer, the medley of "Going Down" and "Voodoo Chile" always pleases! I think that there is a lot of talent nowadays in LV and the Cubs are right up there with my faves in town!







I was not familiar with Wayne Hancock before and was surprised to find out that he was born in '65 and made his debut recording in 1995! His sound is old-school country and I assumed that he was an earlier dude since he has such a superior, traditional sound. His line up this night including him on acoustic guitar, a stand-up bass, a female steel guitar player (who stood while playing - highly unusual), and two lead players with different sounds - an acoustic/electric player that had a bit of a jazzier feel and a Tele man who played a bit more traditional (and terrific) country and rockabilly licks. He lists influences such as Hank Williams (I believe that they did one of his tunes, though I didn't write down which one), Ernest Tubbs and Jimmie Rogers and this is all apparent in his show. Wayne has a fine voice, as well, and the material is all strong. He had some issues with his sound this night - personal preference as opposed to real problems - so I don't know if he was completely happy with the night, but the many fans in the audience, who stayed late on a Tuesday night, certainly dug it all!



Another strong Dive Bar night! Thanks to all for making this one happen!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

more on Gonerfest 11

There are videos of a number of cool bands from Gonerfest 11 up, including the Gizmos' set! Check 'em out here.

Thank you Rocket Science Audio!

Monday, October 13, 2014

interview with Craig Bell (Rocket From the Tombs/Saucers/Down-Fi/Deezen and lots more!)



I met Craig Willis Bell a few months ago when one of his latest conglomerations, Deezen, opened up for the first phase of the Gizmos reunion in Indiana.  Being a huge Rocket From the Tombs fan, I was a little freaked out that this man was opening - opening! - for the Gizmos. But, he was (and is) completely down to earth and totally cool and even accepted our offer to play bass in the mid-west version of the Gizmos! I wanted to learn more about him and, after he responded positively to reviews of some of his discs on this blog, I asked if he would consent to an email interview and he graciously accepted! Again, I'm no writer and as this testifies, I'm no interviewer, but here's Craig and his take of the early days of punk and new wave in the mid-west.



Let’s start with the basics - where did you grow up and what first got you into music?

I was born in Elmira, NY, where my dad worked on the railroad. We moved to a number of different places in New York state and elsewhere as he was promoted on his job, finally landing in Cleveland, Ohio in 1961. I was nine. I had always been into music and especially the radio when I was young.  My brother and I built shortwave kits and listened to broadcasts from all over the world.  I made a giant wire antenna in the rafters of our attic and started keeping a log of stations I could hear as I listened to the distant static-y signals late at night.  The farthest west I ever reached was Denver. I listened to Wolfman Jack on a Texas station, long before he was talked about in Rolling Stone.  Long before Rolling Stone for that matter!  I liked listening to different kinds of music and discovered  lots of small RnB and soul stations in the NE Ohio area, as well as country and early rock.  Of course everything changed with the Beatles coming on the scene!  I don’t think people who weren’t there to experience it can ever know what a tsunami the British Invasion was. Plus, lucky me!, I lived in Cleveland where we had the normal top 40 stations blasting the newest US hits, but we had 50,000-watt monster CKLW out of Windsor, Ontario, Canada broadcasting not only the latest Motown hits, but all the British stuff that was coming over to Canada, weeks before it hit the US charts! In on the ground floor!!


What was your first band?

When living at home, I was not allowed to own a guitar.  I played the trombone (horribly) and the clarinet (see trombone) in grade school but wanted to rock! I would hang around with friends who formed bands, being the go-fer/roadie. Without the intervention of my mother in Feb of 1964 I probably would not have seen The Beatles on Ed Sullivan, but I did. Although, that did not completely seal the deal.  What did was going to the Beachcliff Theatre with my buddy Dave Davis and spending the afternoon sitting through the Gerry and the Pacemakers movie Ferry Cross The Mersey in 1965 about four times; after that, we wanted to be in a rock and roll band!!!  Since I was 13 at the time, I had to wait another five years until I graduated from High School and moved out on my own to follow that dream.  During my high school years, I met the boyfriend of a girl I knew from my church who was a guitar player and liked a lot of stuff I was into.  Jim Crook was home on leave from the Army and soon to be off to Vietnam, as were thousands of others during the 1960’s. Jim did his stint, and he and Shari married when he returned in 1970.  About a year later he invited me to come over to his house on the West Side of Cleveland to meet his friend, guitarist Jamie Klimek.  They both were very excited that I had both Syd Barrett solo albums.  I was very excited that Jamie had a cute sister. I started hanging around more until Jamie decided to put me to use by handing me a bass guitar, showing me how to tune it, what the four strings were, and told me to figure the rest out for myself.  So I did. We needed a drummer, so I asked my friend Michael Weldon, who was a guitarist in that band I used to hang around with in school (I should mention their name here, The Rivers Edge) and we were given a drum set by another friend and we became Mirrors in 1971.


The Mirrors


How did you hook up with Rocket From The Tombs - who did you meet first?

I knew of Peter Laughner from he, and his wife, Charlotte Pressler, being fans of Mirrors and coming around on occasion to the few shows we did. Just as we were starting to play out a bit, I got drafted into the Army and would be gone from 1972-74 keeping you all free. (You’re welcome.)
Jamie has some humorous remarks about this in the liner notes to Those Were Different Times release on Scat Records, if you can find it.  Upon my return, I rejoined Mirrors. Jim Jones was holding place for me in the band while I was away, and we resumed sporadically playing around town. Later that year Peter approached me to join RFTT, which was going through its transition from a loose, parody, fun, weirdo band, to a loose, intense, fun, weirdo band. I went to the rehearsal space downtown near the Shoreway Bridge in Cleveland where I met Cheetah [Gene O'Connor - guitar] and Johnny [Madansky/Blitz - drummer] for the first time.  I had known  David  Thomas (Crocus Behemoth) for some time as he worked at the Viking Saloon and wrote a column for the weekly entertainment papers.


RFTT


Obviously the band was big Iggy fans - what other influences were the basis for your sound?

The Stooges were up there with The MC5, Velvet Underground, The Kinks, Troggs, Beefheart, Barrett, Pink Floyd, Eric Dolphy....we can go on but you get the picture.

Were there places that you could play in town? What kind of reaction would you normally get? Any particularly memorable shows?

RFTT played about five shows in its first go around.  We got some really good gigs at the Agora, opening for the likes of Iron Butterfly and Left End. Peter was really psyched about this NYC band Television and brought them to Cleveland for two shows with us in this penthouse club. We also played with Mirrors and die electric eels at the Viking Saloon a few times.

How was it working with those guys? Were there line-up changes while you were in the band? Did everyone get along?
Were you aware and did you have interactions with the other scenes in Ohio - Akron, Cinci - or were you playing before any of these other scenes got off the ground?

We got along as well as any early twenty somethings with lots of ideas fueled by various and sundry substances who suddenly found themselves in the middle of something that took on a life of its own. So we did what any band of twenty somethings with lots of ideas fueled by various and sundry substances who suddenly find themselves in the middle of something that has taken on a life of its own – we broke up!  Stiv Bators started hanging around and for awhile it was discussed if he would join the group, but instead, we decided to implode.

As for other budding Ohio music scenes, Besides, meeting Stiv, who was from Youngstown, Mirrors had played shows with Akron’s Tin Huey and that was about it, for me, before I left Cleveland that September.  

Did you try to do any other bands in Cleveland?

When I joined RFTT I was kicked out of Mirrors, so at the end of 1975 when Rocket was no more, I was kind of  lost at sea.  I briefly worked with Cheetah, Stiv, Johnny and Jimmy Zero in an early version of Frankenstein, which later became The Dead Boys, and David asked me if I wanted to join his new project with Peter, Pere Ubu.  I also worked with Kevin McMahon for awhile in what later would become Lucky Pierre, but in the end I wanted to try and do something that was my own.  I had been writing a few songs starting in Mirrors wrote and/or co-wrote some more in RFTT, and decided to pursue that direction.

What brought you to New Haven?

When I graduated, I got a job on the railroad (the family business, as it were, I was the 6th generation to work on the railroad) When I returned from my stint in the Army, my job no longer existed.  All the Eastern railroads were being re-organized because massive bankruptcies in the late 60’s early 70’s totally messed up the business. I could not get a decent job in Cleveland in the years after I came home, and when RFTT went bust, I thought it was time to try to find work somewhere else.  I got a job in New Haven, CT on Amtrak and moved there in the fall of 1976.



The Saucers What We Did album - and a link to their song "Muckraker"



Was there a scene happening when you got there?

I didn’t know up from down when we, my then girlfriend Rene Duer and I, came to CT.  I had only been there once before while in the  Army to see Pink Floyd, and it took about a year to start meeting people and finding out what’s what. I slowly learned of goings on, and soon answered an ad for a bass player in a town close by for a recording.  After that I started meeting more musicians in the area and put my own ad in the paper to find some people to form a band.  I met Malcolm Marsden, Malcolm Doak and Mark Mulcahy and we formed Saucers in late 1977. We had a rehearsal space in an old building off downtown and one day a couple of guys walking by heard us playing and stopped in to check us out.  Tom Hearn, and his friend Legs McNeil, of  Punk Magazine fame, liked what they heard and offered us our first gig at a strip mall bar along the shore in Devon.  We were off! After awhile more bands playing original music and non-top-40 covers started either forming or coming out of their spaces and we started doing off nights in a few local clubs that would let us in. Most of the scene at the time were the Top 40 cover bands.  Then we found a bar down by the Yale University campus that became Ron’s Place and from 78-81 it was the scene of an extraordinary explosion of original music in the city and surrounding region of Southern CT that has lasted to this day.

From the comp (It Happened But Nobody Noticed) it seems like a real scene developed, if it hadn’t already been going. What did you think were the strong bands and bands that you dug playing with? How long were you there and what made you leave?

Yes, there was, and still is, a vibrant music scene there. The Poodle Boys, Disturbance, Hot Bodies, Stratford Survivors [with Mad Mike Czejka of the Fuzztones, among many others], Scout House, Subdudes, Baby Strange and many others both on the original 13-song LP I put out in 1982 and the CD re-master I made in 2006 with another 13 bands from that era, a testament to the diversity and incredible talent that exists there.  A documentary about the NH scene was made a few years ago, titled after the comp, It Happened, But Nobody Noticed and is on YouTube.

The Bell System and a link to their song "America Now"


What brought you to Indianapolis?

After 13 years and many bands (Saucers, Future Plan, The Plan, The Bell System, Rhythm Methodists) I was burned out on music, on trying to get a record out, and on bad choices, I needed a change.  I took a job transfer to Indianapolis, IN in 1989.


What was your first band there?

I pretty much was through with music when I moved here, I was beaten and broken.  I spent the first few years working my RR job and feeling sorry for myself and allowing myself to sink into the dark shadows of life.  Around 1995 things started to clear a bit and I pulled the guitar out from under the bed and my wife Claudia, who had been playing in bands with me since 1982, and I started playing a little bit every Xmas with friends in Columbus, Ohio.  Then I went to Cleveland for a show and ran into Jim Jones and Jimmy Zero. From that I was invited to speak and perform at the RnR HOF and Museum in 1997 along with Jimmy and other Cle musicians. After that, David issued the RFTT album of old recordings, The Day The Earth Met Rocket From The Tombs, in 2002 and we reformed to do a one off show in Los Angeles that has turned into a, so far, 12-year new journey.


The Down Fi and a link to a live show


And here's my review of their records, Beehunter and America Now




So I decided to give it another go.  I cleaned myself up a bit and started over with some folks here, Sam Murphy, Mike Theodore, and Jason Bambery in The Down-fi. We recorded our CD America Now in 2009. We have continued through some personnel changes, Sam and I, along with Blane Slaven now on drums, with another EP and a couple of singles. We are presently writing and recording new material for immediate release!

I also joined with Sam and our friends Mike Rippy, Kelsey Simpson, and Dan O’Connell (replaced by Kerry Miller) in Deezen for the past number of years also.



What are your plans now?

I am retiring from the railroad this December 2014 and plan to play and record music as long as I am physically able.  Besides playing and recording with TDFi, Rocket From The Tombs, and Deezen, I play with friends in various other projects at present such as The Gizmos, Teddy and the Mofos, and X_____X. Have bass will travel!


Deezen live, opening for the Gizmos



The Gizmos with Craig, Kelsey and Sam from Deezen